Medtech startup 52 North Health raises £1m to trial sepsis testing device

52 north health prototype

Medtech startup 52 North Health has raised £1m in its first funding round, led by Cambridge Enterprise.

Cambridge-headquartered 52 North will use the capital to fund clinical trials for its NeutroCheck device. It also plans to pursue partnerships with the UK Sepsis Trust and Macmillan Cancer Support.

Founded in 2018, 52 North Health aims to improve healthcare with a medical device that uses artificial intelligence (AI) to determine the risk of neutropenic sepsis for patients undergoing chemotherapy.

The portable device lets at home patients determine their risk, through a blood finger-prick.

Its platform can be used for both soluble and insoluble biomarkers to be found from a single biological specimen using an app supported device the NeutroCheck.

Currently, patients going through chemotherapy who feel unwell are told to go to A&E, where patients are given antibiotics and blood tests, however, half are found to have no risk.

“We are delighted to have the support of excellent investors who are aligned with our values. With the advent of personalised medicine and an increasingly decentralised healthcare system – a need accelerated by the pandemic – many existing care pathways are no longer fit-for-purpose. In addition, the digitisation of healthcare can often exacerbate health inequality,” said Umaima Ahmad, CEO and co-founder of 52 North Health.

Additional funding came from Crista Galli Ventures, King’s Health Partners MedTech Innovations, Meltwind, Milltrust Ventures and a group of angel investors.

According to 52 North Health, Neutropenic sepsis kills three people in England and Wales every day.

“We are pleased and proud to continue our successful relationship with 52 North Health. This investment is a significant milestone in the journey of the NeutroCheck technology from laboratory concept, through our Chris Abell Postdoc Business Plan in 2018, SBRI Healthcare grant award, and onwards now into commercialisation,” said Dr Amanda Wooding, investment director, Cambridge Enterprise.

The news follows £1m in funding from SBRI Healthcare in January this year and £100,000 in January 2021. SBRI Healthcare is funded by NHS England and helped by the Academic Health Science Network.

SBRI Healthcare earlier this year spent £9m on eight late-stage projects developing cancer diagnosis technologies.